Jodhpur: The Jodhpur Schedule Caste and Schedule Tribe Court will pronounce its verdict in a rape case against Asaram Bapu, a self-styled 'godman', on Wednesday. The verdict will be pronounced inside the Jodhpur Central Jail.
Meanwhile, earlier on Tuesday, Jodhpur Court dismissed the petition seeking entry of media persons in Central Jail for the coverage of the judgment. Security has also been beefed up outside the victim`s residence.
"We have provided full security and safety to the victim and her family members and are alert," KB Singh, CO, Shahjahanpur said.
Delhi police CPRO Deepender Pathak said that the police is alert and is in constant touch with concerned states and that adequate forces will immediately be deployed if required. "Delhi police alert and in touch with concerned states. All field formations of police put on alert. Adequate forces will immediately be deployed if required. All officers will be present in their areas," he said, as per ANI.
Asaram is accused of raping a teenage girl from Shahajahanpur in Uttar Pradesh, who was studying his ashram at Chhindwara in Madhya Pradesh. Asaram has denied the rape charges.
The victim had alleged that Asaram called her to his ashram in Manai area near Jodhpur and raped her on the night of August 15, 2013. "I have full faith in the judiciary and am confident that Asaram will be given the severest form of punishment," said the victim's father, PTI reported. Security was also stepped up around the victim's house in Shahajahanpur.
Final arguments in the case had been completed by the special court for SC/ST cases on April 7 and the court had kept the order reserved for April 25. Asaram was arrested in Indore and brought to Jodhpur on September 1, 2013. He is in judicial custody since September 2, 2013.
The chargesheet against Asaram and four other co-accused Shiva, Shilpi, Sharad and Prakash was filed by the police on November 6, 2013, under various sections of the POSCO Act, Juvenile Justice Act and IPC. If convicted, Asaram could be jailed for a minimum of 10 years or awarded a maximum life term, according to prosecution lawyers.
Asaram is also facing a rape case in Surat in Gujarat in which the Supreme Court earlier this month gave five weeks time to the prosecution to complete the trial.
(With Agency inputs)